Published: Sep 16, 2012 08:22:54 PM Updated: Oct 17, 2012 12:11:02 PM
The final night of competition at the EnergyAustralia Short Course Championships in Perth will see a whopping fifteen Australian short course titles determined.
One of those titles is the crowd favourite men’s 100m freestyle which will pit London Olympian Cameron McEvoy up against short course sprinting sensation Kenneth To.
Also in the mix for the medals is McEvoy’s Olympic teammate Tomasso D’Orsogna and World Championship gold medallist Matt Abood.
The sprinters won’t be the only swimmers on show tonight with the men’s 1500m freestyle title also up for grabs.
The triple threat of Matt Levings, Mack Horton and Jordan Harrison all pushing for selection will make for an exciting race – with all three men proving themselves as talented distance swimmers.
After taking two titles last night and breaking four short course world records at the meet so far, Paralympian Grant Paterson will be looking to extend his winning streak when he takes on the men in the 50m backstroke Multi Class final tonight.
Despite only just arriving back in Australia from London, Patterson is showing no signs of jet-lag with the 23-year-old proving a tough to beat with in the short course format.
Thirty-six-year-old Troy Puttergill (32.55) will progress through in second spot with Paralympic gold medallist Patrick Donachie (33.56) qualifying third.
The newly crowned Australian Short Course Champion over 800m has claimed the distance double after a convincing win in the women's 1500m freestyle timed final this morning.
The Junior Pan Pacific medal winner in this event Laura Crockart established a commanding lead early in the race and maintained a 20m gap from the field throughout the 60-lap race to touch the wall in 16:10.41, an impressive 20 second personal best time for Crockart.
Crockart’s Junior Pan Pacs teammate and open water rookie Kareena Lee had a strong second half of the race but it was a case of too little too late as Lee surged into the wall at 16:24.60 to finish with the silver. Australian Open Water Champion Leah Cutting collected the bronze for her gruelling effort, finishing in 16.24.60.
In other events…
Women’s 200m Freestyle
London Olympians Angie Bainbridge (1:58.66) and Blair Evans (1:58.45) have one last chance to swim for selection on the World Championship Short Course team when they fight for first spot in the finals of the women’s 200m freestyle.
Both swimmers have narrowly missed selection in their previous events and both have seed times faster than the qualifying time needed.
But the duo will have to out-swim triple-medallist from the meet so far Ellen Fullerton (1:58.74), 2010 World Short Course silver medallist Kelly Stubbins (1:58.01) and rising star Jessica Morrison who will take lane four tonight with her time of 1:57.98.
Men’s 200m Backstroke
Gold and silver medallist from this meet Travis Mahoney (1:54.89) has taken the top spot going into the finals of the men’s 200m backstroke tonight. The 22-year-old lead from start to finish but will need to take just over two seconds off his heat time to gain selection onto the World Short Course Championship team.
Fellow Victorian Joshua Beaver (1:55.19) will go through in third place, after finishing third in this event at the 2012 EnergyAustralia Swimming Championships, Beaver is a real medal prospect for tonight.
The final is anyone’s for the taking with silver medallist from the 100m backstroke and bronze medallist from the 50m backstroke Ash Delaney (1:56.21) and South Australian Ben Edmonds both looking to spoil the Victorian affair; with Edmonds time of 1:54.94 just behind Mahoney.
Women’s 200m Breaststroke
Dual Olympian Sally Foster (2:24.37) was in a league of her own in the women’s 200m breaststroke as she powered to the wall finishing two-and-a-half body lengths ahead of the rest of the field. The WA local will go through as race favourite for tonight’s final.
A finalist in this event at the London Games, Foster will be looking to set a qualifying time to put her in contention for selection in the 2012 World Short Course Championship team.
Foster’s closest rival Jenna Strauch finished four seconds behind in 2:28.14 to take second position ahead of last year’s fourth place finisher Ashlea Gierke (2:28.20) who will be looking for a reprisal and a medal in this year’s final.
Men’s 200m Butterfly
Olympic debutant Christopher Wright has a difficult task ahead of him if he hopes to defend his 200m butterfly title for the fifth consecutive year. The Commonwealth Record holder in this event has been relegated to sixth fastest qualifier for the final.
The 2011 short course bronze medallist Lachlan Staples (1:56.52) will take lane four for the final after surging into first position while Victorians Andrew Cameron (1:57.27) and Shane Ashbury (1:57.39) improved significantly on last year’s placing’s to round out the top three qualifiers.